As this year's Edinburgh festival approaches its close - with the Fringe Festival ending yesterday and the International Festival finishing this weekend - this year's winners for the prestigious Stage, Perrier and the new Carol Tambor Awards have all been announced.

In the Stage's Awards for Acting Excellence (See News, 24 Aug 2004, for full list of nominees), Best Actor has been scooped by James Urbaniak (pictured) for his performance in Fringe First-winning Thom Pain, which transfers to Soho Theatre on 3 September (See News 19 Aug & 20 Aug 2004). Best Actress is Pauline Goldsmith for Not I by Samuel Beckett - a 20-minute monologue where only the actress' mouth is visible - while Best Ensemble performance goes to Grid Iron's Fierce: An Urban Myth at the Assembly Rooms.

A new addition to the prizes this year, the Carol Tambor Award, is chosen by the New York portrait artist of the same name from The Scotsman's Fringe First winners to enjoy an off-Broadway run (See News, 27 Aug 2004). Spoilt for choice, Tambor chose to award two productions the prize in its inaugural year. The first is Rosebud, Mark Jenkins' one-man play about Orson Welles, performed by Christian McKay. Meanwhile, Tambor enjoyed the second production, Sisters, Such Devoted Sisters, so much she decided to overlook the fact that it does not officially qualify having not won a Fringe First.

Of the five shortlisted stand-ups for the Perrier Award (See News, 25 Aug 2004, for full list of nominees) Will Adamsdale - and his alter-ego Chris John Jackson, American life coach and motivational speaker - came out on top with Jackson's Way at the Smirnoff Underbelly. Wil Hodgson won the Perrier Best Newcomer award for The Passion of The Hodgson at the Holyrood Tavern.

Other awards announced this past weekend at the 'Fringe Oscars' included the Daily Mail Jack Tinker Spirit of the Fringe Awards, taken by Mary Shields (formerly associate artistic director of the Assembly Rooms) and Una Maclean (who performed in Shimmer at the Traverse).

The Amnesty International Freedom of Expression Award was taken by When the Bulbul Stopped Singing, David Greig's premiere adaptation of Raja Shehadeh's memoir, directed by Philip Howard at the Traverse Theatre (See The Goss, 25 Aug 2004).

- by Hannah Kennedy